Thursday preview: AstraZeneca results due, ECB policy announcement in focus
It's set to be a scorcher in London on Thursday, with things hotting up on the corporate front as well as a slew of earnings are due to roll in, while the latest policy announcement from the European Central Bank will also be eyed.
Pharmaceuticals giant AstraZeneca will release its first-half results, a day after rival GlaxoSmithKline. Deutsche Bank expects "strong" second-quarter product sales of about 10%, partly offset by a 3% FX headwind.
"Although US penetration of Tagrisso and Imfinzi is beginning to peak, improved rest of world reimbursement access should be benefitting sales while Lynparza and Fasenra continue to grow very strongly," it said.
"With a recently launched US generic of Faslodex having only modest impact to date, we expect overall 2Q sales growth to be strong."
DB expects guidance to be reiterated and said it was confident that cash-flow will improve substantially based on operating margin improvements, covering the dividend by 2020.
Diageo is also slated to report its full-year numbers. The Share Centre noted that the shares have enjoyed a good run so far this year, outperforming the FTSE 100.
"The company has been benefitting from the strong demand for spirits, especially in key emerging markets such as India. There is some recent evidence that consumers are switching out of beer and lager and favouring spirits such as gin and whisky in which Diageo has a strong offering. In May the company said it was expecting full-year sales growth in the high single digits and an improvement in profit margins.
"The market will be interested to hear about expectations for the coming year and whether there are likely to be further share buybacks."
The latest policy announcement from the ECB will also be in focus. RBC Capital Markets said it now expects two 10 basis points rate cuts in the deposit rate this year beginning at the September meeting.
"As we flagged at the time the risks to that call were for an earlier cut or a deeper cut by 20bp in one go. However, a rate cut in September, when a new version of the ECB staff macroeconomic projections is available, remains our central scenario.
"Therefore we expect the ECB to use the upcoming meeting to begin to lay the ground for that by changing its forward guidance by re-introducing the easing bias into its forward guidance. That would be achieved by reintroducing the ‘or lower’ element to the language to reference rates being ‘at their present or lower levels’ rather than just ‘at present’ as per the current iteration."
Thursday July 25
Acacia Mining, Anglo American, AstraZeneca, Bodycote, Capital & Counties Properties , Howden Joinery Group, Inchcape, Lancashire Holdings Limited, Morgan Advanced Materials , National Express Group, Primary Health Properties, Relx plc, Tyman, Unilever, Vesuvius
INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Arbuthnot Banking Group, BB Healthcare Trust (Red), Blackrock Income And Growth Investment Trust, Foresight 4 VCT, M & G Credit Income Investment Trust , Nichols
QUARTERLY PAYMENT DATE
Brunner Inv Trust, Fair Oaks Income Limited 2017 Shs NPV, General Electric Co, Land Securities Group
QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE
APQ Global Limited, City of London Inv Trust, Custodian Reit
INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Continuing Claims (US) (13:30)
Durable Goods Orders (US) (13:30)
ECB Interest Rate (EU) (12:45)
GFK Consumer Confidence (GER) (07:00)
IFO Business Climate (GER) (09:00)
IFO Current Assessment (GER) (09:00)
IFO Expectations (GER) (09:00)
Initial Jobless Claims (US) (13:30)
Lancashire Holdings Limited
Diageo, Fuller Smith & Turner, Highlands Natural Resources, NCC Group, Scholium Group
SPECIAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Martin Currie Asia Unconstrained Trust , Ventus VCT, Ventus VCT 'C' Shares
Advanced Oncotherapy, Bluerock Diamonds, BMO Global Smaller Companies, Caffyns, CMC Markets, De La Rue, Edinburgh Inv Trust, Federal Bank Ltd (The) GDR (REGS), Federal Bank Ltd (The) GDR (REGS), FirstGroup, Halma, HarbourVest Global Private Equity Limited A Shs, Henderson Alternative Strategies Trust , Honye Financial Services Limited (DI), Immunodiagnostic Systems Holdings, Intermediate Capital Group, NewRiver REIT, PayPoint, Pennon Group, Polarean Imaging, Record, Tate & Lyle, Telecom Plus, VP, Weiss Korea Opportunity Fund Ltd
AJ Bell, CMC Markets, Compass Group, Daily Mail and General Trust A (Non.V), Intermediate Capital Group, Sage Group
FINAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
Anglo Asian Mining, Electrocomponents, Gama Aviation , Inspired Energy, Mckay Securities, MS International, Triple Point Income VCT C, Triple Point Income VCT D
FINAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Bloomsbury Publishing, Blue Planet Investment Trust, Celtic 6% Cnv Cum Prf, City of London 4.2% Cum 1st Prf Stk, City of London Investment Trust 4.2% Non-Cum 2nd Prf Stk, City of London Investment Trust Preference Ord Stk 14% Non-Cumulative 1, Halfords Group, Investec, Martin Currie Asia Unconstrained Trust , NB Private Equity Partners Ltd., Pennon Group, Porvair, Royal Mail, Scapa Group, SSE, Stenprop Limited, Ventus VCT D Shs, Ventus VCT, Ventus VCT 'C' Shares